Headquaters of the Red Cross at Alcalá de Henares



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    An approach – on which we based our proposal – has emerged from a study of the site and its surroundings which we identified as a coexistence of seemingly unrelated contents, such as single-family dwellings, collective housing buildings, a church, a police station, a shopping center and a bullring, are defining a complenx environment. Above all, there is a street with high traffic which produces a lot of noise that is disturbing the serene atmosphere required for the intended activities.

    We proposed a functional building that is at the same time representative towards the street, showing its institutional character. The interior space opens onto the interior protected courtyards that provide privacy. The maincourtyard serves as a cloister to which all of the activities turn and as such is a space of relationships. The private courtyards provide privacy, accoustic isolation, natural light and natural ventilation to the training classroms.

    Our proposal is based on the complete occupation of the plot. We took advantages of all of its extent so as to distribute the necessary program in a way that each enclosed space has its visual extension to the exterior of a protected and controlled environment, with a possibility to use that exterior when the weather is allowing it. In this way the building is fragmented into different interior spaces (classrooms, rooms, offices, reception, etc.) and exterior (the patios) whose arrangement is based on activities they accomodate. There are two types of the patios: “patio of recollection and work” and “relationship patio”.

    Key Facts

    Hedquarters of the Red Cross

    Client: Red Cross Spain
    Architects: Olalquiaga Arquitectos
    Location: c/ Valentín Juara Bellot, Alcalá de Henares,
    Madrid, Spain
    Purpose: Social and educational center
    Built area: 970,00 m2
    Budget: 850.000,00 €
    Mechanical Engineer: Stufive. S.L.
    Technical Architect: Alberto Palencia
    Renderings: José Manuel Rico Zamora

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